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CAN A SAINT LOSE SALVATION?

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Scripturally, a saint is ‘whosoever’ that have believed the gospel of the grace of God in Christ Jesus and have received eternal life. A saint is a man who is BORN AGAIN. He is a son of God (Jn 1:12). He has been justified (declared righteous), sanctified (made holy) and perfected in his spirit forever through the sacrifice of Jesus (Rom 5:1, Heb. 10:14). Note that this identification is irrespective of his outward performance (Rom 4:4-8, Eph 2:8,9).

Apostle Paul usually addressed the believer as Saints because he had a clear revelation of what we have experienced when we became NEW CREATURES in Christ Jesus (2 Cor.5:17).

“Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, TO THE SAINTS which are at Ephesus,” (Eph. 1:1)

“Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints” (1 Cor. 1:2)

A saint is also called a believer or a Christian. Therefore, a “Saint” is not a person who has said the sinner’s prayer or was born into a Christian family. While each of these things can be a part of the believer experience, they are not what makes a “Saint”.

So, with this definition in mind, can a Saint lose salvation?

I believe the best way to answer this question is to examine further what the Bible says occurs at salvation and to study what losing salvation would entail:

1. A saint is a new creature. “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!” (2 Cor. 5:17). A Saint (Christian) is not simply an “improved” version of a person; he is an entirely new creature. He is “in Christ.” For him to lose salvation, the new creation would have to be destroyed.

2. A Saint is redeemed. “For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect” (1 Peter 1:18–19).

The word redeemed refers to a purchase being made, a price being paid, a ransom. We were purchased at the cost of Christ’s death. For a Christian to lose salvation, God Himself would have to revoke His purchase of the individual for whom He paid with the precious blood of Christ.

3. A Christian is justified. “Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ” (Romans 5:1). To justify is to declare righteous. All those who receive Jesus as Savior are “declared righteous” by God. For a Christian to lose salvation, God would have to go back on His Word and “un-declare” what He had previously declared. Those absolved of guilt would have to be tried again and found guilty. God would have to reverse the sentence handed down from the throne of grace.

4. A Christian is promised eternal life. “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16). God promises, “Believe and you will have eternal life.” For a Christian to lose salvation, eternal life would have to be redefined. Does eternal not mean “eternal”?

5. A Christian is marked by God and sealed by the Spirit. “You also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory” (Ephesians 1:13–14).

At the moment of faith, the new Christian is marked and sealed with the Spirit, who was promised to act as a deposit to guarantee the heavenly inheritance. The end result is that God’s glory is praised. For a Christian to lose salvation, God would have to erase the mark, withdraw the Spirit, cancel the deposit, break His promise, revoke the guarantee, keep the inheritance, forego the praise, and lessen His glory- God forbid.

6. A Christian is guaranteed glorification. “Those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified” (Romans 8:30). According to Romans 5:1, justification is ours at the moment of faith. According to Romans 8:30, glorification comes with justification. All those whom God justifies are promised to be glorified. This promise will be fulfilled when Christians receive their perfect resurrection bodies in heaven. If a Christian can lose salvation as claimed by some preachers, then they invariably mean that Romans 8:30 is in error, because God could not guarantee glorification for all those whom He predestines, calls, and justifies.

A Saint CANNOT lose salvation. Otherwise all of what the Bible says happens to us when we receive Christ would be nullified if salvation could be lost. Salvation is the gift of God, and God’s gifts are “irrevocable” (Romans 11:29). A Christian cannot be un-newly created (Hallelujah!). The redeemed cannot be unpurchased. Eternal life cannot be temporary or else John 3:16 would have read, “…that whosoever believes in Him will not perish if only he keeps himself pure unto the end”. God cannot go back on His Word. He cannot break His promises. Scripture says that God cannot lie (Titus 1:2).

Two common objections to the belief that a Christian cannot lose salvation concern these experiential issues:

1) What about believers who live in a sinful, unrepentant lifestyle?

2) What about believers who reject the faith and deny Christ?

The problem with these objections is the assumption that everyone who goes to Church and calls himself a “Christian” has actually been born again. It’s like saying that because you slept in a garage overnight, you are now a car or because you brought your dog into your living room, it’s now a human being. The Bible declares in 1John 3:6 that a true believer will not live a state of continual, unrepentant sin.

“Whosoever abideth in him sinneth not: whosoever sinneth hath not SEEN him, neither KNOWN him.” (1 John 3:6…Emphasis mine)

The Bible also says that anyone who departs the faith is demonstrating that he was never truly a born again (1 John 2:19).

“They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us.

They may have been a worker or committed member. They may have put on a good show of religious activities, but they were never born again by the power of God. “By their fruit you will recognize them” (Matthew 7:16).

Nothing can separate a child of God from the Father’s love (Romans 8:38–39). Nothing can remove a Christian from God’s hand (John 10:28–29). God guarantees eternal life and maintains the salvation He has given us. The Good Shepherd searches for the lost sheep, and, “when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders and goes home” (Luke 15:5–6). The lamb is found, and the Shepherd gladly bears the burden; our Lord takes full responsibility for bringing the lost one safely home.

Jude 24–25 further emphasizes the goodness and faithfulness of our Savior: “To Him who is able to keep you from FALLING and to PRESENT YOU before his glorious presence WITHOUT FAULT and with great joy—to the only God our Savior…through Jesus Christ our Lord…”

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<br/><br/>Dr. Tosan


Dr. Tosan

The author is a trained Microbiologist, a seasoned Minister of God, a Motivational Speaker and an Author of several life-changing books. He is happily married and reside in Nigeria.

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Julius
Julius
1 year ago

But a saint can fall into sin

tonye
tonye
1 year ago

Great